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Monk hails Middlesbrough as the perfect challenge after signing three-year deal

first_imgNew Middlesbrough manager Garry Monk believes the club “tick all the boxes” he was looking for and is targeting an immediate return to the Premier League following last season’s relegation.Monk has joined Boro on a three-year contract just over two weeks after leaving Leeds following his one-season stay at Elland Road, where he just missed out on a play-off place.The 38-year-old was expected to remain at Leeds beyond the end of the season but talks broke down following Andrea Radrizzani’s takeover, which led to Monk resigning.However, the former Swansea boss is delighted to take charge at the Riverside Stadium and believes the foundations are in place for a promotion push despite a disappointing season in the top flight last year.Monk told a press conference: “I became a manager out of a job and obviously I’m ambitious and want to be working and find that right challenge – that is something I have always wanted.“Speaking to the chairman Steve (Gibson) especially and all the guys at the club, it was that ambition and challenge that ticked all the boxes that I was looking for.“Everything I wanted in terms of the challenge I wanted was clear with Middlesbrough.”Gibson has spoken of his desire to ‘smash’ the Championship next season as Boro look to make their stay outside the top flight as short as possible.If the club manage to keep hold of the majority of their players, and with the possibility of money being available for new signings, then expectations will be high that Boro can bounce back at the first attempt.That will place extra scrutiny on Monk’s head, but he says he is ready to take it all in his stride.He said: “It’s fine. I’ve worked under pressure since I started becoming a manger and that’s how I work best. I think in football nowadays everything, particularly in management, is a high-pressured situation.“That (promotion) is the objective. There’s no getting away from that. That is the challenge that you want, I have signed for three years and I would like to make it at the first attempt but you know as well as me how difficult it is to do that.“You saw that the three teams that went down last season, only one made it back and in previous seasons gone by it has been very difficult for teams to make it back. But one thing that this club is, is that it is equipped, it’s ready and it’s determined to bounce back at the first time of asking.”There has also been plenty of speculation surrounding the future of captain Ben Gibson – who is currently on international duty with England – with several Premier League clubs reportedly interested in the central defender.Monk believes the 24-year-old will have an important role to play – if he remains at the club.“Ben is one of a number of players who are integral to this club and integral to making that step back to the Premier League. Right now, it is about being here, being happy and excited to be here working with these players and maybe adding to the squad,” he said.“The players we have got here have a lot of talent. You look from before, they had a good progression from the club, built its way to the Premier League and shows it’s a club that works in a good way.“The key is to make sure the club refocus and get ready with confidence to come again this season and back into it.”There are ongoing discussions as to whether former Boro interim boss Steve Agnew and coach Jonathan Woodgate will remain at the club, with James Beattie – who worked with Monk at Leeds – linked with a move to the north east.An announcement on Monk’s backroom staff is set to be made later in the week. 1 Garry Monk has signed a three-year deal as Middlesbrough manager last_img

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